An IT Asset Ecosystem: customer vision

Some organizations tolerate siloed elements of infrastructure management if they can see that individual silos are performing well. So the additional benefits that could accrue from creating connections are sacrificed to avoid disturbing the smooth running operations in each silo. Breaching or tearing down the silo walls will only happen with leadership, from someone not afraid to implement change.

For some years, we here at Vector have pushed the concept of Software Asset Optimization, in which application software is purchased in just enough quantity to meet actual need, is deployed only to the correct PCs, and is verified as regularly used. This already demands cooperation between line managers and IT, IT and purchasing, IT and info security.

Today, we were privileged to be asked to expand the vision further. Adding in Provisioning Lifecycle Management enables IT resource allocation to be linked explicitly to roles and users. Adding in asset lifecycle management means that IT assets are optimized before they are deployed, taking care of purchases, stocking and preparation prior to deployment. Once deployed, the asset’s status is monitored by the network asset discovery tool. When withdrawn from service the management of the hardware’s disposal is taken up by the asset lifecycle tool. Provisioning Lifecycle Management will already have defined what should happen to the licences allocated to the user of that system, depending on whether this is purely a hardware replacement, a staff churn, or a redundancy. Connection with HR avoids loose ends in employment terminations and enables timely resource provision for new arrivals.

Connections between the asset lifecycle tool, the network asset discovery tool, and Provisioning Lifecycle Management provide continuity of control over assets. With its emphasis on defining and justifying resource allocation, Provisioning Lifecycle Management provides organization-wide resource cost analysis and information for charge-back. The asset lifecycle tool should provide depreciation for the accountants.

And the customer wants excellence in all these elements, all from a single source to simplify integration with the incumbent HR and IT issue management systems, and – of course – silos banished. It’s the closest I’ve seen yet to a vision of a complete IT asset ecosystem.